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SMC Pentax-DA L 50-200mm F4-5.6 ED Review RSS Feed

SMC Pentax-DA L 50-200mm F4-5.6 ED

Sharpness 
 8.0
Aberrations 
 8.4
Bokeh 
 7.9
Autofocus 
 8.0
Handling 
 8.4
Value 
 9.1
Reviews Views Date of last review
17 110,746 Tue January 10, 2023
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Recommended By Average Price Average User Rating
100% of reviewers $90.43 8.24
SMC Pentax-DA L 50-200mm F4-5.6 ED

SMC Pentax-DA L 50-200mm F4-5.6 ED
supersize
SMC Pentax-DA L 50-200mm F4-5.6 ED
supersize
SMC Pentax-DA L 50-200mm F4-5.6 ED
supersize

Description:
The SMC Pentax-DA L 50-200mm F4-5.6 lens is similar to its DA-series counterpart, except that it features a slightly lighter design, plastic mount, and no quick-shift focus functionality. This lens is only available in camera kit bundles and does not come with a hood.

SMC Pentax-DA L 50-200mm F4-5.6 ED
© www.pentaxforums.com, sharable with attribution
Image Format
APS-C
Lens Mount
Pentax K
Aperture Ring
No
Diaphragm
Automatic, 6 blades
Optics
11 elements, 10 groups
Mount Variant
KAF
Check camera compatibility
Max. Aperture
F4-5.6
Min. Aperture
F22-32
Focusing
AF (screwdrive)
Quick-shift
No
Min. Focus
110 cm
Max. Magnification
0.24x
Filter Size
52 mm
Internal Focus
No
Field of View (Diag. / Horiz.)

APS-C: 31.5-8.1 ° / 27-6.9 °
Hood
PH-RBB 52 mm
Case
S80-120
Lens Cap
O-LC52
Coating
SMC
Weather Sealing
No
Other Features
Diam x Length
66.5 x 78.5 mm (2.6 x 3.1 in.)
Weight
235 g (8.3 oz.)
Production Years
2008 (start of production)
Engraved Name
smc PENTAX-DA L 1:4-5.6 50-200mm ED
Product Code
21817
Reviews
User reviews
Notes
Plastic lens mount.
One ED element.
Variants

Two variants: Black and white

Features:
Screwdrive AutofocusAutomatic ApertureAPS-C Digital Only
Sample Photos: View Sample Photos
Price History:



Add Review of SMC Pentax-DA L 50-200mm F4-5.6 ED
Author:
Sort Reviews by: Date | Author | Rating | Recommendation | Likes (Descending) Showing Reviews 1-15 of 17
Veteran Member

Registered: April, 2012
Location: Melbs
Posts: 1,240
Review Date: January 10, 2023 Recommended | Price: $40.00 | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Light, Good Detial
Cons:
Sharpness: 9    Aberrations: 10    Bokeh: 9    Autofocus: 10    Handling: 10    Value: 10    New or Used: Used    Camera Used: K5   

Terribly surprised with this lens.

Iím a snob, and pretty much wrote of all these ďkitĒ lenses because I had superior f2 and Takumar glass.

A recent hiking trip had me reach for this because I was half convinced,I would drop it down a mountain. It wascarried wrapped in a spare scarf in my bag and when on camera, spent most of itístime out being banged against trees and rocks.

The images at the end of the day were really really good. Nota single AF miss, excellent fringing control (assuming camera is helping withitís auto math), plenty of detail. Andletís be honest, when out and about on hills looking at mountains you end upshooting at F6.7 / F8 all day anyway. Why would I want a F2,8 DA* with all thatweight?

This is destined to become the standard exploring lens. The weight oh the weight, its as heavy as apair of hiking socks. Thatís important! Itreally really is.

Looking forward to the next adventure with it.
   
Moderator

Registered: July, 2011
Location: Melbourne
Posts: 1,760
Review Date: January 1, 2023 Recommended | Price: $38.00 | Rating: 9 

 
Pros: Cheap, light weight, quality images and good contrast
Cons: Minimum focus distance

I found the cheap little DA L 50-200mm kit lens a real pleasure to use . Originally I chose this lens and it's sister lens the DA L 18-55 as I was going away on a bike ride and didn't want to risk losing or damaging one of my more expensive lenses. Both proved to be very easy to use, lightweight, a nice focal range and fast enough to use with modern DSLR cameras. They both use the 52mm filter size which helps keep the size and weight down. The only small complaint I have is the Minimum focal distance, 110 cm is workable but 50cm would be nicer. For the small price I paid and the ease of use I think this lens is a real bargain
Some of my favourites from the month away. If you have the chance to pick up this lens, go for it.
surfer colour by Gary Wakeling, on Flickr
leaves golden by Gary Wakeling, on Flickr
star post by Gary Wakeling, on Flickr
into the wind by Gary Wakeling, on Flickr
   
Forum Member

Registered: September, 2012
Location: Tokyo
Posts: 72
Review Date: May 29, 2020 Recommended | Rating: 9 

 
Pros: Lightweight, cheap, no big problems
Cons: Screwdrive AF isn't the fastest, no distance scale
Sharpness: 7    Aberrations: 8    Bokeh: 8    Autofocus: 6    Handling: 6    Value: 10    New or Used: New    Camera Used: K-S1, K7, K5   

Very light lens, easy to carry along on a hike or pack for travel. If searching for a new lens, you'll probably dismiss it in favour of something starting at 18mm, or offering a larger aperture, but those will be heavier and costlier. If you do acquire this one, maybe bundled as a kit, don't dismiss it on optical grounds. In good light, it is fine. Autofocus isn't the best (screwdrive has its limitations) but this keeps the cost and weight down. Manual focus is easy with the pentaprism finders of most Pentax DSLRs, including the cheap one (K-S1) I used for manual-focussed shots below:





(above were re-sized to 1 megapixel for web upload)

Objectively, this lens isn't the highest performer in any of the scoring classes offered, but it's not bad either. Don't bother comparing it with constant F2.8 zooms or SDM lenses, but for the price, this is a simple and effective performer in normal conditions.
   
New Member

Registered: August, 2018
Posts: 2
Review Date: March 13, 2020 Recommended | Price: $100.00 | Rating: 9 

 
Pros: Covers the 50-200mm range
Cons: Plastic build but expected for the price
Sharpness: 8    Aberrations: 8    Bokeh: 7    Autofocus: 8    Handling: 9    Value: 9    New or Used: New    Camera Used: K-50   

Works well on my K-50 camera. Decent performer, however after 135mm images are softer. For the price it is a decent lens but it has no qualities that stand out. It is light and does not take a lot of space in the camera bag (just little bit longer than the 18-55mm kit lens).
   
New Member

Registered: March, 2015
Location: Oklahoma
Posts: 16

1 user found this helpful
Review Date: March 13, 2015 Recommended | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: resolution, saturation, contrast, focus accuracy
Cons: plastic mount possibly not as durable
Sharpness: 9    Aberrations: 9    Bokeh: 9    Autofocus: 10    Handling: 10    Value: 10    New or Used: New    Camera Used: K-500   

This lens came in a two lens kit with the K-500. I started out with the attitude of "It is cheap. But it's a Pentax. How bad could it be?" After using it for almost a year, I can answer the question of "How good can this cheap lens be?" Excellent! That's how good. I have tested it against the smc Pentax-M 135mm f3.5, a Takumar 135mm f2.5, Tamron 70-300mm, a slew of 50/55mm Pentax, Takumar, and Chinon primes and a 200mm f3.5. This thing can hold its own! And since the K-500 can be set to automatically correct CA, distortion, and fine focus for this lens, I am getting some very pleasing results without the fuss and bother of manual primes.


Pentax DA L 50-200mm at 137.5mm f4.5


Pentax DA L 50-200mm


Pentax DA L 50-200mm


Pentax DA L 50-200mm at 200mm f5.6
   
New Member

Registered: June, 2014
Posts: 1
Review Date: June 6, 2014 Recommended | Rating: 8 

 
Pros: optics, size
Cons:
Sharpness: 8    Aberrations: 8    Bokeh: 8    Autofocus: 8    Handling: 8    Value: 8    New or Used: New    Camera Used: K-r (12 Mpx)   

good kit lens
   
Site Supporter

Registered: November, 2012
Location: North Wales
Posts: 2,869
Review Date: December 10, 2013 Recommended | Rating: 7 

 
Pros: cheap, AF, some good IQ
Cons: slow! Technical limitations (sub par IQ at f5.6, 200mm)
Value: 8    New or Used: New    Camera Used: K-r   

I acquired this lens with my K-r as a 2-lens kit. I was unimpressed when I first tried it and it languished in the box. Lately I sold it with another camera but before it went I did these test pics (channel marker is about 1/2km out in the estuary) at 200mm.



First thing I have to say is that the crops are a bit misleading. I was tweaking the focus using live view manually but when I looked at the pics I am fairly sure the camera disobligingly did a little refocus - back focussing in fact on the background. However the general sense is correct: sub par performance at f5.6, still not great at f8. Thats the bad news. The good news is how the IQ jumps as the lens is stopped down to f11.

Heres a couple of points of comparison: the same shot taken with a 200mm prime (tamron 4B) and a noted vintage zoom at 210mm (vivitar series one 70-210 komine). I have to say the latter was almost as bad as the DAL wide open!



The tamron is a classy prime already good at f3.5, however I have to say there's not much between the tamron and the DAL at f11, tha'ts how much it sharpens up. This test pic also at 200mm but of a closer subject - the clock on the church tower - gives a more consistent perspective (no OOF).



So I didn't do any investigations at shorter focal lengths and by all accounts it's better at those. If I want to shoot at 200mm, between 04B and this is a no-brainer. And I can't really see any circumstance where AF would override the difference in IQ, not once the difference in shutter speeds between f3.5 and >f8 have been factored in. However, I can say that the lens clearly has some good quality, and bearing in mind there is a steady trickle of these onto ebay and it is obtainable for around fifty quid odd, I think thats a recommend. Just remember to stop down if looking for some TP reach.
   
New Member

Registered: January, 2010
Posts: 23
Review Date: July 8, 2013 Recommended | Price: $120.00 | Rating: 9 

 
Pros: Light weight, good optics, smooth focusing
Cons: No full time manual focus, loud autofocus
Sharpness: 9    Aberrations: 8    Bokeh: 8    Autofocus: 7    Handling: 10    Value: 9    New or Used: Used    Camera Used: Pentax kx   

Autofocus might be a bit inaccurate and loud. Smooth focus ring. I do not mind plastic mount but it would be great to have full time focus (quick shift). IQ exceeds expectation and color rendition is pleasant. Hood is highly recommended for shooting. Copy variation might be significant. The copy I have performs quite well optically and deserves a high remark, while the copy reviewed by www.photozone.de is apparently a bad one.




   
Pentaxian

Registered: September, 2010
Location: Lyon area, France
Posts: 718
Review Date: January 19, 2012 Recommended | Price: $100.00 | Rating: 8 

 
Pros: Lightweight and small for the range
Cons: None
Sharpness: 7    Aberrations: 6    Bokeh: 7    Autofocus: 8    Handling: 7    Value: 9    New or Used: New   

This lens makes a lot of sense as part of a twin-lenses kit. It complements very nicely the 18-55, with slight overlapping at an useful FL range. Of course it is slow...
The IQ is OK though nothing exceptional. It is a small, lightweight, decent telephoto zoom. However if you plan to buy it separately you'd better go for the DA or DA WR versions of this lens, which will give you quick-shift, a hood... for not much more.
   
Pentaxian

Registered: January, 2011
Location: SkŚne, Sweden
Posts: 482

1 user found this helpful
Review Date: January 2, 2012 Recommended | Price: $140.00 | Rating: 7 

 
Pros: Small size, light weight, cheap, usable image quality
Cons: Does not excel in any aspects, IQ may be to low for serious work
Sharpness: 6    Aberrations: 8    Bokeh: 6    Autofocus: 8    Handling: 8    Value: 8    New or Used: New   

Got this as a part of the larger K-x kit. Price indicated is a approximated premium of the large vs standard kit (bought in Sweden early 2010).

In my first 12 months as a Pentaxian, I used this more than the 18-55 kit lens. I found image quality at around 50mm (where they where overlapping) to be superior. However, when I got hold of some old cheap primes I was learning what the camera could produce and to be fair this lens does not do the K-x justice in terms of image quality that it is capable of producing. That said, I have taken lots of pictures that I am happy with, and since 98% or so of my images end up on the web or in small prints, this lens can produce acceptable image quality for that purpose.

Image quality wide open is not great.. center sharpness is acceptable, but it lacks in corners. It is also a bit soft at longer focal lengths, say over 150mm. Stepped down it does improve quite a lot, but at F8 or so you need to be outside on a not to dark day to use it handheld, if you don't want to push ISO a bit. Aberrations are present, but given a little time in post-processing they can be handled to some extent. Bokeh is a mixed bag, sometimes pretty good, but often nervous. Contrast is fine though, as well as flare control.

The lens is obviously a low-budget alternative, which shows in handling. Plastic mount, no quick-shift, no supplied hood etc.. but tolerances are pretty descent compared to kit-lenses from other brands. Also autofocus is quick and the lens weights in at just 235g and is pretty compact. Good for walk around and travel!

I wouldn't hesitate to recommend this lens to anyone seeking a low-budget alternative, but don't expect it to be super sharp or fast... Reasonable all-round performance for the price though.

| Pentax K-x | ISO 200 | 200mm | F8 |


| Pentax K-x | ISO 400 | 50mm | F8 |


Please note that the images provided is at the extreme ends of the zoom range, still very usable even though sweet spot is probably around 75-135mm or so. Second image is shot with a tripod, just to clarify that this is not a lens for handheld night photography
   
Veteran Member

Registered: July, 2011
Location: Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
Posts: 647

1 user found this helpful
Review Date: October 2, 2011 Recommended | Rating: 8 

 
Pros: Sharp (read my review below), lightweight, good handling
Cons: Plastic mount, no quickshift, AF obviously hunts in low-light
Sharpness: 8    Aberrations: 10    Bokeh: 10    Autofocus: 8    Handling: 10    Value: 10    New or Used: New    Camera Used: Pentax K-r // K-30   

I could say its slow, with a plastic mount, and everything. But it's a kit lens. And as a kit lens it's very good.
Put it at f8 and snap your pics away! Its going to be acceptably sharp. Have fun with this lens.
You can even put it at around 200mm and use the largest aperture to defocus the background.

This is my old camera's box.
And another test.

(the vignetting i added on post)
______________________
Editing after almost 3 months of use
______________________
I really enjoy this lens. Good range (50mm can be used for portraits, 200 is pretty long, you can use to photograph animals, etc)
Some more pictures :



   
Senior Member

Registered: June, 2011
Location: Israel
Posts: 177

1 user found this helpful
Review Date: August 18, 2011 Recommended | Rating: 8 

 
Pros: Sharp, pretty inexpensive
Cons: Not good in low-light, no hood, feels sort of cheap
Sharpness: 9    Aberrations: 8    Bokeh: 8    Autofocus: 9    Handling: 8    Value: 8    New or Used: New   

For a kit lens, this is pretty good. It covers a decent range and and the photos come out pretty sharp.

But... it feels cheap. Really plasticky. Its also no good in low-light because of its aperture. And they didn't throw in a hood to go along with it!

Despite its flaws I think that this is a pretty decent lens, therefore my overall rating for it is 8/10
   
Forum Member

Registered: January, 2011
Location: Land of the password
Posts: 83
Review Date: January 7, 2011 Recommended | Rating: 7 

 
Pros: Sharp, lightweight, decent contrast
Cons: Cheap construction, no lens hood

I received this as part a K-x twin lens kit with the 18-55 D-AL. I was expecting this to be the paperweight out of the two but it turned out to be the other way around. The 18-55mm was poor and this lens was much better, being much sharper than the 18-55mm.
The focal length is nice and it can be a sharp and contrasty lens at F8. It is usable at F5.6 at both ends. For a cheap, lightweight travel lens it is ideal. No real complaints as it came as part of a kit. The 55-300mm may be better if you buying a standalone lens but as part of a kit it is very good value.
   
Veteran Member

Registered: January, 2010
Location: Lansing, MI
Posts: 509

1 user found this helpful
Review Date: July 18, 2010 Recommended | Price: $95.00 | Rating: 8 

 
Pros: small & lightweight, inexpensive
Cons: no quick shift

Sharper than the DAL18-55. I was quite happy with this lens until I tried shooting birds and planes. As a result, I just bought a DA55-300 in the Marketplace. I didn't miss quick shift till I got my DA35. This lens is a bargain if you get it with the Kx.
   
Junior Member

Registered: April, 2010
Location: NC
Posts: 42
Review Date: April 11, 2010 Recommended | Rating: 7 

 
Pros: size and range
Cons:

I received this lense as part of a 2 lense kit with my K-x. Overall it is a decent lense but i probably would not spend the full $250 retail on this lense. It is a very light lense and seems to be made mostly of plastic so I am not sure how durable this lense is, although I am use to holding the older SMC M lenses attached to a K1000. If you can get this for only $50-$100 more in a bundle then I would recommend it. It has produced some good pictures for me.
Add Review of SMC Pentax-DA L 50-200mm F4-5.6 ED



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